Marketa Vondrousova is slowly adjusting to the pressure that accompanies Grand Slam success and the Wimbledon champion said her immediate goal was to get through matches at this week’s Canadian Open without succumbing to nerves.
The Czech left-hander became the first unseeded player to capture the Wimbledon women’s singles title after a surprise 6-4, 6-4 victory over Ons Jabeur in the final last month and the 24-year-old is keen to remain focused.
“People around me, I feel like they’re going to expect so much now,” Vondrousova, who opened her campaign in Montreal with a 6-4 6-2 win over Mayar Sherif on Tuesday, told reporters.
“I know if you’re a Grand Slam champion, the expectations are very high.
“But for me, it’s important to stay in my small circle and just work on things and just to get through some matches, with nerves and everything and just get used to the pressure. So that’s what I’m working on now.”
Up next for Vondrousova is former world number one Caroline Wozniacki, who returned to competitive tennis after three years out to start a family by easing past qualifier Kimberly Birrell 6-2 6-2 in the opening round.
Vondrousova is well aware of the threat Wozniacki and others can pose.
“I feel like everybody is going to play great tennis and everybody wants to beat you,” Vondrousova said. “So I was a bit nervous, but I feel like I just play a couple of games and I’m back into my rhythm.”
Off the court, the 2019 French Open runner-up is learning to deal with newfound stardom.
“When we came home (from Wimbledon), the first week was really crazy,” Vondrousova said.
“I feel like it’s a change. People are recognising you more, even in the city. I don’t like these kinds of things, to be seen this much.
“Then I started to practice, so it was better.”
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